Our 2010 Open Championship Memories
Every five years, the Open Championship returns to St Andrews and the Old Course. As you might imagine, the town teems with visitors and brims with excitement. Patrons are 5 deep at the Dunvegan, a popular local restaurant and pub. And that’s on the pavement! Golfers, locals and visitors mix as one. There is no other place and no other event like it.
While on course drama was lacking in this year’s Open, we still took away many wonderful remembrances (and a few we would like to forget!). Here are some of our memories for the 2010 Open Championship:
- The Road Hole – The golfers proved why this hole, the 17th on the Old Course, is one of the most interesting and famous holes in golf. The lengthening of the hole only added .04 strokes this year versus 2005 but produced more words from scribes then anything else. To quote Shakespeare, it was ‘much ado about nothing.” The R&A deserve kudos for making the hole the centerpiece of the Open.
- Miguel Angel Jimenez – It seemed fitting to us that a Spaniard would find a way to execute a near impossible shot on the Road Hole (see video). Clearly, Jimenez paid attention to his countrymen, Ballesteros & Olazabal, the original wizards of shot making.
- Louis Oosthuizen’s surgical play to win the Open Championship – It wasn’t flashy but Oosthuizen did some things that allow one to win Major Championships. Oosthuizen hit 16 out of 16 fairways on Friday( while belting it an average of 330 yards ), the day the course closed for 66 minutes because of high winds. He 3 putt only twice on the Old Course’s colossal double greens. Congrats to Louis on his outstanding play to win the Open and for his opening remarks upon winning where he wished his former President, Nelson Mandela, a happy 92nd birthday. Color us impressed.
- Rory McIlroy’s opening round 63 - OK. His second round wasn’t pretty but his opening round score of 63 was pure dead brilliant. He hit 17 greens in regulation, had 1 eagle, 7 birdies and 10 pars. Flawless. But temporary. Fear not though, Rory is 21 and he will be back.
- Friday’s scoreboard – Hopefully we weren’t the only one who found the humour in the Scoreboard announcement of the course closure on Friday. “Play suspended because of high winds. LOL ” It is an Open after all.
- Tom Watson’s farewell – While he will likely play in more Open Championships, Tom Watson will be 65 years old when the Open returns to St Andrews. His walk down 18 on Friday night in the waning light was likely his goodbye to the Auld Grey Toon. Tom Watson, a 5 time winner of the Open Championship, will long be remembered in St Andrews. As an aside, it seemed to us a classy move by Justin Rose, Camilo Villegas & Tiger Woods to allow Watson to finish his round by waving him up as darkness began to set preventing Watson’s return the next morning to finish the last hole.
- The Weather – Just like St Andrews to deliver a little bit of every kind of weather imaginable. Perfect for an Open Championship.
- Arnold Palmer in town again – You know how we are about royalty and seeing the King in town puts a smile on everyone’s face. His visit coincided with the tournament but he was in St Andrews to receive an honourary degree from the University of St Andrews. The one thing we can tell you is this: the only other people to command attention like Arnold Palmer were John Kennedy and Winston Churchill. Powerful stuff indeed.
- The Old Course – Once again the Old Course was the biggest winner of all. It is a special place that everyone loves immediately or learns to love eventually. There are other great courses that make up the Open rota but nothing compares to the wonders of the Old Course (and St Andrews).
- John Daly’s attire – How can we view him as a contender again if he doesn’t take himself seriously?